Support for Event Venues
Support for Event Venues
Over the past several months, we have all been navigating the unprecedented circumstances that have been brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. As economies have begun to open and restrictions have gradually relaxed with health and safety guidelines in place, many industries are facing catastrophic circumstances and are struggling to stay afloat. We are writing you today to bring awareness to the plight of Alberta’s Events Industry (venues, concert halls, community centres, conference centres, etc.) With the ending of CECRA and no additional ongoing support many of us are facing the eventuality of closing our doors permanently and/or bankruptcy.
As restaurants, casinos, bars, and bingo halls have proceeded to safely re-open at 50% capacity, our restrictions remain at a maximum of 50-100 people which is FAR below our maximum capacities. We have faced multiple cancellations, postponements, higher operational costs, contractual obligations with other vendors, and other such losses. In order to follow Alberta Health Guidelines, we often have to turn away new business and have very few options to host events.
We are requesting support from the government to provide additional aid and consider all or at least some of the following suggestions to help keep our industry alive:
· Financial Support:
o Extend CECRA to businesses until Stage 3 is announced (Covering between 50-75%)
o Funding to support the increased costs of operation (i.e. PPE, increased cleaning staff, increased sanitization and disinfection supplies)
· Low Interest Loans to help relaunch:
o Loans and grants should be set out for businesses that have to wait for Phase 3 to relaunch
· Increase gathering restrictions to 50% capacity:
o Similar to other service industries, increase our maximum capacity to 50% with social distancing guidelines in place (i.e. individuals seated for the entirety of the event, socially distanced tables, 6 people max at each table, etc.)
In response to the dire economic impact to Alberta’s Events Industry, we request the Government of Alberta and the Government of Canada to acknowledge the crisis we have found ourselves in and seriously consider our proposed solutions to keep our businesses viable. Not only will these actions help to stabilize our industry, but also contribute to supporting strong recovery for our economy by supporting other small businesses that we partner with on a regular basis (i.e. photographers, DJs, lighting and décor, etc.).